Just a warning, this is pretty darn long as my write-up usually are. Sorry it’s not just a recap of the Boys on stage, but of the entire weekend.
Like I said, oh, what a weekend. It’s been since September where they sang me Nobody Else for my birthday and what a treat it was to have them back in the Bay Area at the historic Fillmore. Yes, Texas La Onda (Jeanette, Rachel and Ora) was in town as well as Christel and Dale from Chicago. I wasn’t able to make it to lunch but I’m glad they were able to get together with Laura and Emil, Martha and Rob (in from beautiful Hawaii) and Tasina. I got into the city around 3:30 and was in line by 4 PM.
However, before that, on my way to work in Emeryville that morning, I took 580 West towards Oakland. I look over to my right and see a white, shiny tour bus with a trailer. Hmmm. Now, I know they have a different bus every so often so who could it be? I was trying to think who else was in town. 3OH3 was in town but would they need a big bus like that? So, with my newly washed car, I slowly made my way in front of the bus to hopefully have the driver notice my LNLY BYS license plate and “I’d Rather Be At A Los Lonely Boys Concert” license plate frame I got from Martha and Rob for Christmas one year. I slowed down. The bus was going about 55 mph and my lead foot was hard to hold back. They had a driver years ago that I absolutely loved. I wondered if for some reason he’d be behind the wheel once again. I haven’t seen him since Redding over two years ago. Anyways, I didn’t get any attention, a honk or anything from the bus so I illegally Twittered and FB’d while ONDA road asking IS IT YOU? No response until I passed the Fillmore and low and behold, the white shining bus I saw earlier that morning was parked right out front. Later that evening in line, Glenn re-confirmed it was them.
I arrived near the Fillmore where the line begins. VS, Ora, Rachel, Laura and Tim were already in line! Nice job! Like the years before, the early birds were lined up to the right of the front doors of the post office. We chatted, walked over to Starbucks, made a stop at the cool hat store and tried on different hats. Used the potty (Bathroom code is #4962 I believe). I passed this code to other La Onda so the Starbucks Nazis didn’t give them a hard time about using the bathroom without making a purchase. So more standing around in line… eventually we saw that JoJo got picked up, and then Henry, Ringo and Glenn got into a different car a little while later. We were pretty quiet and didn’t holler at them. Then I’m not sure if I was the first one or not to yell HENRY but we eventually did it together and before he got in to ride shotgun, he raised his hand high in a wave. And then they were gone.
I waited until the line got longer before I street teamed. Courteney and Teresa arrived, Emil, Janet… eventually Ace, Ana, Maritza and Ruth showed up as well. Debbie and Mano rolled up in their 4Runner(?) honking their horn and of course all of us in the front went hollering back. Martha was so funny, she went up to car and started handing them goodies. Last year, Pat S. and I were in line behind two guys in chairs and a case of beer. They were two friends that go to a lot of concerts and called themselves ‘The Joeys’. One of the guys was also in line (I forgot his name) recognized me from last year and was all excited b/c apparently we had an awesome time the year before up at the stage. So he called the missing JOEY on his cell phone and made me talk to him. It was pretty funny cause that guy remembered me too! So strange. Anyways, this guy in line brought his son and later while we were next to each other again at the stage, he said I’m “JOEY Material” and gave me a high five. I guess I can hang with The Joeys.
I ran into an old coworker of mine. She handled the Hispanic advertising for the Chevron account I was working on. We haven’t seen each other in years and clearly doesn’t know how involved I am with the Boys. It’s funny that she didn’t know what a “Street Team” was. While speaking to her, I heard my name being called. It was Laura Gomez that I befriended on FB. She’s a young girl and loves the Boys. She was with her husband and cousin and called me a ‘hard core’ fan when she saw my bag w/all the LLB buttons on it and LLB patch. It’s the bag that Debbie R. gave me when we were in Oregon. She’s a sweetheart and she told me about a shirt that she planned on wearing to the Sparks show. It was a black tee that said ‘Peace, Love and Tortillas’ on the front and the URL on the back. Great shirt! She said she made it herself. I’m thinking there’s OBTB Street Team potential there, y’all. I’m just saying! While I was chatting Laura, my cute little blonde friend, Courteney was handing out the postcards that Margie made. Courteney is so cute that people can’t DENY the swag she’s handing out. Like, my older cousins used to bring me door to door to fundraise (sell candy bars or whatever) for their school activities because I was a little kid. Marketing – baby. Or is that exploitation? Anyways… I was handing out the post-its that Margie also made. I was on my last batch for the weekend so I’m looking forward to having a new design and buy more for the August shows. People graciously took a few post-its for me. Lots of thank yous, ‘Oh, I love the Boys’, etc. and I just love chatting it up with people. I’m not afraid to talk to strangers. Now that I think about it, perhaps I shouldn’t have let Courteney do that by herself at night in San Francisco. Doh! Clearly, I wasn’t thinking. I just thought how cool it was that she was taking the initiative. She wanted to be a part of the team and we definitely consider her part of OBTB.
We eventually made it in the venue. We staked out place at the front of the stage. Lea (Lisa C’s daughter) and I had to use the powder room and we also took a little trip upstairs to check out the balcony. As you can see from my photos I posted earlier (see link) there was a band playing upstairs and the balcony is covered in posters of previous shows from the Fillmore. How awesome. I would love to open up my own bar someday and have music memorabilia from my personal collection. Then we headed down to our spots. A cocktail waitress made her rounds and we settled in.
Carrie Rodriguez was up first. She wore a green top, black pants, black toe peep high heels and a black thin tie. I really enjoyed her fiddle. You go girl, with your fiddle and bouncy black curls. I loved the concentration on her face as she jammed and how shreds of her bow were swaying in the air as she moved it back and forth. I think she did an awesome job. I loved the ‘Never Ganne Be Your Bride’ and ‘Don’t Want to Play House Anymore.’ I love the ‘get out of my face’ songs by women. We’re powerful creatures and the girls were screaming in approval. She also sang a song in Spanish and I thought that was a treat. I love it when artists surprise you by doing something unexpected.
Alejandro Escovedo was up next and I can honestly say I have never heard one of his songs. I thought he was pretty good. Carrie was up there with him as well so she got some good stage time. He got down and seemed like he was having a good time up there with David (?) and Carrie. At this point, I was a little tired of standing and angling my head up. I just wanted the Boys on stage.
Eventually it was time for Ish to make sure all was good in the hood with the equipment for the Boys. I’m not sure when Janet arrived behind me with her scooter but she made it and was up close. Like many times before, a big, drunken zebra stumbled, shoved and pushed her way thru the crowd carrying a drink yelling profanities that she was going to kick everyone’s toosh and that she’s the show’s producers cousin or someone of importance. She was trying to push her way to the front. Pushing Maria, Ana, Ellen and almost spilling her drink on Janet. “TIM!” “MANO!” Where’s our muscle, darnit?!? Maria went to go get security and when he arrived, apparently we weren’t the only ones who had complained about this woman. The security guard told her that she can’t have anymore to drink and that if he gets one more complaint she’s out of there. I did not want my friends having to deal with that nonsense. So I yelled out “Get her out of here!” over and over again. Other people followed. Eventually he listened and escorted her away from us. When he left her, she threw her drink in our direction and got some of it on us. Eventually instances like this are going to happen. The Boys were coming up next and I’m so glad we didn’t have to deal with her anymore. Props to the Fillmore security for helping out. And GO Maria! You handled that!
YAY! The Boys were coming out. I had VS to my left and Lea to my right. JoJo came up to me and shook my hand, Leas and VS and of course other fans. Lea says “I’m never washing my hand again.” Ha! He also waved to Janet and she got a kick out of that too. I don’t have the set list, Laura said she was going to do it so I didn’t bother. I was thinking of Twittering each song they did but I was told at another concert they didn’t like the screen of my phone being on. It is bright so I understood. In addition to LDCAM, they also played Loving You Always (which I haven’t heard since the KFOG acoustic performance), Heaven of course, More Than Love, etc. Pictures taken with my camera won’t be nearly as good as Maria’s so I didn’t take as many. I did take some on my iPhone so I can post them to FB and Twitter. I couldn’t see Ringo at all from where I was. A big speaker was in the way. During the encore, Carrie, David and Alejandro came out and they sang a Rolling Stones song I didn’t know. I felt like a lame-o. But it was cool to see them all on the stage at once. Henry was out without his glasses and you could see his eyes! So cool. I remember a SoCal luncheon we had at a Mexican spot before the Greek and LaurieBoop was handing out gifts or finding out which fan has done what. One of the questions was who has seen Henry without his glasses. There were only two of us that did, I was one of them. Now everyone else has too! It was such a mystery. God, what are we going to do when he cuts his hair off?! That’ll probably be it’s own thread on the forum, I’m sure.
The Boys were great as always, seemed they were having a good time. They tossed out picks and JoJo shook hands with people. Ellen tapped me on the shoulder and told me there were two little girls in the audience and they were going to stand in front of us to get some attention from the boys. They did. They got picks from JoJo and of course a smile and wave. What a treat. Like I said earlier about the near disastrous dismount by JoJo and Super Glenn to the rescue, they got on the bus and didn’t come out. On our way out, they were handing out the Cockadoodle Doo posters to everyone. You can see photos of it on FB. (Sorry). La Onda hung out in front of the Fillmore for a bit, chatting, reflecting on the show, laughing with Glenn. Maritza saw that Alejandro was passing by. She sounded so cute and star struck and kindly asked for a photo… then Ana and I also had to have one. He was so kind to oblige. My version of the photo is pretty funny because he’s looking at me, not the camera.
It was the birthday of a very good friend of mine, Christy. She was next to me at Cache Creek when they sang Nobody Else to me for my birthday and I was a ball of tears. I felt really, really bad that I asked her if I could go to Sparks instead of her birthday activities. She knows how much I love the Boys and with her good heart, she didn’t give me a hard time about missing out on her drunken birthday to go play in the snow with La Onda. That’s friendship right there. Needless to say, I owe her. See what I do for the Boys!
The goal was to get picked up at my house at 10 AM. We didn’t end up ONDA road until noon. I drove the Pathfinder with itty bitty luggage space. Epic Enterprise fail. C’mon, man. Six women, 15” deep of luggage space. Aye dios mio! But we made it work, we just had to pack smarter. We stopped off in Auburn for gas and In&Out. It was pouring down rain and soon we were going to see snow. It was absolutely beautiful. So glad we got the SUV with 4WheelDrive. Overlooking Donner Lake in Truckee was so nice. We eventually made it out of the snow and into Reno and Sparks. No snow to be found but it was definitely nippy. We checked into our room and got ready for dinner. The buffet was delicious and the dessert area was mouthwatering. Dinner consisted of Laura, Rob, Martha, Tasina and VS made an appearance.
We headed towards will call to get our tickets. There I found Mano and Debbie. We didn’t have any time to chat at the Fillmore so it was very good to see them. They’re such a hot lookin’ couple, don’t cha think? Then Glenn came around behind me and gave me a hug. Apparently I missed him as I walked by. Oops. We made our way inside after the usher said “Down front.” Oh, I love those words. Tasina was debating whether or not to go upstairs and rest, but I convinced her to sit with me at my table until Ellen comes. I really didn’t want Tasina to be alone. As I approached my seat, I found that Laura G. and Matthew already were already in their seats. Then I realized that I forgot that I was supposed to call her about dinner. Oh, such a scatterbrain. I wanted to get to know her a little more. And what a surprise, Vicky from SoCal was sitting right next to me. Her husband Oscar was there. What a treat. I haven’t seen her since the Greek. She’s such a sweetheart. On my side of the room, there was Christina, VS, Margie, Laura and Tasina’s original seat. But Martha was sitting there for the time being, afterall, she came all the way from Hawaii, what’s the harm of sitting with friends for awhile. On the opposite side of the room was Debbie and Mano, Carol G., Ana and Maritza.
Tasina & I (Ondaroadmates & Ondaroomies)
Maritza, Ana & I
Carrie and Alejandro did their thing. Carrie’s bow shredded once again. Before the Boys came out, I did some street teaming with the post its again. People were a bit strange at this show. They were either already tipsy and/or just didn’t know how to react to me. They weren’t as gracious as the guests in line at The Fillmore. Some people took them. The younger girls in the far corner were very pleased with them. I believe friends of Jan were there and they handed out flyers. That was nice. I wondered who made those when I went chat with Laura G. I took my post-its to almost the back row and then I was almost completely out of them. OK, I did my job. Seemed like I was the only one handing out swag. Saw Glenn again. Can’t get enough hugs from that man.
Then the Boys came out. I was much more impressed the use of the backdrop this time around. In the beginning, JoJo and Henry were talking to each other about to do the next song. JoJo said he didn’t want to do that one next. Let’s do something different. They teased us with doing the first couple notes of Extreme’s ‘More Than Words’ and crowd and I went nuts. And of course, they stopped. What a beautiful song for them to cover, if they had done it. That would’ve been so awesome. Before Suppertime, they gave JoJo a guitar and joked around about how JoJo taught Henry how to play the guitar. JoJo did a ‘That Thing You Do’ impression from the movie where the lead singer/Liv Tyler’s fiancé sings “I quit.” It was pretty funny. During Suppertime, green beans, biscuits and tortillas graced the white sheets and video of the Hollywood sign and the west coast were showcased. I thought it was very cool. JoJo ran off stage for a bit and came back. He mentioned the local hero they were honoring that evening. It was for a fallen soldier and his father was there to accept the honor. According to Tasina, there were a lot tears shed and JoJo sweetly said ‘God bless you, Brother.’ Such a sweet thing to do. It was our very own Margie that put in the nomination. At this seated venue, I was dancing in my chair but when Man to Beat was played VS said she had to get up and dance. So that’s when we stayed up for remainder of the show. They did Heaven. Walked off and came back to do one more. Henry without his glasses again, and JoJo sporting a beanie. They did I’m A Man and it was so awesome. You just have to dance to that song.
Then it was time for them to say goodbye again. Until August. Booohooo. They threw out picks, Ringo handed out drumsticks. Funny, Ringo saw Christina and handed her a drumstick with a sweet smile. JoJo hung around and made his rounds to the fans that were lingering around wanting pictures. There were people to the far right of the stage that had access the stage and actually got on the stage to take a photo with him. Nope, nope, nope, Glenn says to shoo them off the stage. So JoJo was kind enough to get off stage and pose for a photo on the side. The pretty girls on the far right also got a group picture. He signed many autographs, took many photos and it was really nice to have a moment to make small talk as well with him. A hug and a great picture.
Glenn reappeared to hang out with Ana and Maritza and more so outside of the venue. While inside, Glenn said he needed to get the Boys some food and funny Ish popped his head out from under the drawn curtains also asking for food. We hung out in front of the venue for a bit, spoke with the merch guy (Where’s Ian?!?) and we decided to go the bus. Yes, Ana and I followed in our dresses and high heels in the pouring snow and icy sidewalk. But it was soooo beautiful. We took a few photos out there we were just having a good ol’ time. We hung out for a bit and then went back inside to get warm and have a few drinks. Mano was drinking already so he was ready to dance. We played a little bit at the bar to get comped drinks and then met up with Debbie and Mano and danced until it was time to go to bed. Good times as always.
The next morning, we were sitting at breakfast, looking over the posted road conditions, hearing that 80W was closed and won’t reopen til 2 or 4PM. We were thinking of an alternate route. It’s been snowing all night so who knows how stuck our car was. So Debbie went upstairs to put her boots on and I stepped out in my Skechers to see how bad the car was. We had to shove the snow off the windshield and other windows and I drove for the very first time in snow. I also got gas and got lost on my way back BUT I picked up the ladies and we were on our way home. Halfway home, the car was a bit quiet and I looked over at Tasina who was sitting shotgun. Yup, she’s in deep thought as well. I wondered if I should speak up or let her be. I asked her what she was thinking. It’s a bit sad that we were headed in the direction of reality instead of pure bliss when you’re at an LLB concert. We’ve traveled many miles together, had many conversations on the road, many stories to share and tears we’ve cried together. Thru heartache and screechings of happiness. We’ve been doing this, following the Boys, loving their music for five years. That’s a long time. Half a decade. And it’s hard not to be sad when it’s over, even if it’s just for another 6 months. (For me, at least). It’s one of my favorite things to do in this whole world. Thank you, LLB, Glenn and La Onda for playing a joyous part of my life. Until August…